If you pay any attention at all to health topics like nutrition, you probably know that the types of fats found in food are important. But you may not know which ones you need and which ones you’re probably overdosing on.
Let’s break it down.
There are two types of fats in food that you need to for your health-omega 6 and omega 3. Both are essential to good health but if you’re like most Americans, you’re getting too much of one and not enough of the other. It could be costing you your health.
Are You OD’ing on This?
Most Americans overload on omega 6. It’s in mayonnaise, salad dressings, vegetable oils and processed foods. Even the so-called “healthy” ones.
You do need some of it. It’s a linoleic acid and a polyunsaturated fat that your body needs. Your body just doesn’t need so much of it at the expense of other fats.
Too much omega 6 can lead to inflammation and that is linked to heart disease, cancer and even Alzheimer’s.
Add More of These
Health reports these days tell you to get more omega 3 fatty acids. If you’re like a lot of Americans, this may be a significant dietary change for you but it’ll pay off in greater health and a longer life. It may even help you drop a few pounds.
Experts say most Americans are eating 10-30 times the amount of omega 6’s to omega 3’s, so our intake is seriously upside down.
Here’s what you can do. If you don’t already, make olive oil your “go to” oil for cooking. You can make your own salad dressings with it too or just use oil and vinegar on your salad for flavoring.
Eat more nuts. Nuts-especially walnuts-are good sources of omega 3’s too.
Here’s the big one. Eat more fish. Fish oil is the single most important resource for the omega 3 fats found in food that you need. Salmon, anchovies and even canned tuna are filled with DHA and EPA–the fats that make up a large portion of your brain.
They also reduce chronic inflammation and thin your blood so you’re at less risk for dangerous blood clots that can lead to heart attack or stroke. Plus, since omega 3 fats feed your brain, they can help keep you focused and mentally sharp throughout your life.
Nutritionists recommend eating fish 2-3 times a week. Eat less fried food, less packaged food and more vegetables. Include healthy olive oil and walnuts in your regular diet. Some also recommend fish oil supplements. Fish supplements can help your raise your levels of good fats found in food so you get healthier and feel better.